A.'s Reviews > Gold
It's quite hard to express how impressed I was with Gold. I have a vague memory of reading Silver a while back and I don't recall being as invested in it as I was in this one. It's rare that a sequel surpasses the first in a series, but it's easy to say that Vance succeeded with Gold.
The book starts off with Brianna on her way to Lorcan Hall, Ireland. Events occurring between the first and second book led to Brianna's exile in Ireland, which also led to the end of her relationship with Blake. And let me just say, I wasn't all too sad to see him go. (I'll explain in a minute.) Here, we meet some new characters and are reunited with some old ones. But more importantly, we are introduced to a new Brianna.
I don't remember Brianna of book 1 leaving a lasting impression on me. In fact, if anything, I remember her as being the flaky-damsel-but-i-looove-him type. But Brianna 2.0? This is someone whose earrings I'd hold when she'd go all Bandia on someone's ass. In the beginning, we see Brianna reeling from the fall out of her life in CA. Be warned, there are some (annoying) tears at the start. But as the story went on, she grew some iron into her bones and this was when I started falling in love with her. Gone was the naive, gullible girl who leaned on her so-called one true love. The new woman that evolved in book 2 was captivating, strong, and likable. And just so damn fierce! She wasn't afraid to be independent and kick some ass when called for. I really, really loved the route that Vance went with Brianna. And it should be said that Austin was a big part of her growth.
Austin. Aaron. Arawn. He could have 10 names and I'd be sighing all of them. This guy was awesome. (Hello, alliteration.) He just really was! He was portrayed as the villain-esque character in book 1, but he totally stole the show in this one. He was supportive and encouraging, sweet and sexy, protective but independent. He never enforced his opinions onto Brianna, but let her be her own person. Which every guy should do. And I loved how he wasn't scared of her magic. (Albeit, I'm sure his godliness helped with that.) He wasn't intimidated of her power and never thought less of her because of it. He accepted her and that is all anyone can ask for. Unlike some people... (<-- I'm shouting this part.)
Onto Blake. I didn't like him in book 1, so I hated him in book 2. Actually, he's big part of why I didn't really love the first one. This guy. No words. Love is trust, faith, and loyalty. Of which he had none. I cannot formulate into words my frustration with this character.
Honestly. Someone get me a bazooka. If there is a book 3, he better as hell not be a romantic interest. Immacuttabitch. (view spoiler)[ Who the hell sleeps/bonds with a girl just days after breaking up with his "true love"? Wtf? Not to mention he automatically thought that it was her who tried to kill his family. AND THEN he was the audacity to sulk about and say she broke his heart blahblahblah. Oh, please. Bite me. Sorry, rant over. (hide spoiler)]
As for the story itself, it revolves around the rising of an unruly god hoping to reestablish his power and position on earth. Said god is Pwil (Pwyll on Wiki), former right-hand of Arawn when he was god of the underworld. And so the story follows with the Gathering of mythical Celtic beings and creatures, including the Bandia, the Sons of Killian, Milesians, giolla, and fuath. These new characters were a delite. Especially the fuath! I kind of pictured them as killer My Little Ponies. However, I felt that the plot and secondary characters (mainly the "bad guys") fell secondary to the main cast. There were moments when the story was stilted and even had me scratching my head at some points. Aside from all that, I found myself unable to put the book down.
And then came the ending. You know how young babies follow things put in front of them and when you take it away they keep looking at the spot like it'll come back at any moment? That's me at the end of the book. Staring at my kindle, waiting for my world to become all sunshine and rainbows again. Expecting some sort of Deux Ex Machina to come prancing along.
And then it ended. Vance, you heartless ^&!@(*!@)(*&.
After my tantrum ended, I realized how attached I'd become to this book, and was immediately hungry for more. Although, I'm not sure if there will be one, the story ends with a hopeful note that should appease some fans.
Overall, a spectacular sequel that should definitely be added to your to-be-read list.